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Re: When "free" is no longer free and other yarns
From: David Farber <dave () farber net>
Date: Mon, 4 Aug 2008 08:20:37 -0700
From: Geoff Kuenning [geoff () cs hmc edu]
Sent: Monday, August 04, 2008 6:14 AM
To: David Farber
Subject: Re: When "free" is no longer free and other yarns
It's long ago been proven that per-unit pricing in any market will
tend to reduce usage, while bulk pricing increases usage. This is
true even when the bulk pricing is actually more expensive per unit;
see cellphones as a good example.
If the ISPs are interested in increasing usage, then bulk pricing is
the way to go. That worked well for the Internet in the U.S.; bulk
pricing caused people to visit lots of Web sites, which in turn
increased usage and eventually ISP profits (who would want to work
across a $10/month dialup connection nowadays?).
OTOH, if Comcast is interested in stifling usage and planning only for
the short term, there's nothing better than metering to keep people
from finding new applications.
Geoff Kuenning geoff () cs hmc edu http://www.cs.hmc.edu/~geoff/
If at first you succeed, try to hide your astonishment.
-- Harry F. Banks
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